India Tech Startup scene – Social Networking

For last few weeks, I was following indian tech startup scene…started by reading some excellent articles by Paul Graham and Guy Kawasaki…got particularly interested after reading a detailed report in Business Today (3rd June issue)…VC investments in India shot up from $17 million to $166 million in 2006…the scene is certainly red hot

Here is a brief summary of web 2.0 (or just web…hell with this 2.0 or 3.0 crap) companies…I will cover it categorywise…

Social Networking: MingleBox would of course be the first name coming on top…especially after getting that sumptuous sum of $7 million from Sequoia. Then there is yaari, Jhoom, Fropper, DesiMartini, Indyarocks and not sure how many more…everyone is ‘Web 2.0’ with all the latest features of sharing photos, videos, blogging, yada yada yada. Find Amit Ranjan’s (of take here. There are some who are trying to find a niche. for cricket fans, or saffronconnect for music for example. It will be interesting to see who wins…there should not be more than 2 or 3 players in general category when war is over. Minglebox is tapping into the college campuses, by creating readymade college campus groups…really smart move…that will make the new generation stick on Minglebox after we all being taken by Orkut…
Orkut looks so passe with these agile newcomers…I wonder why on earth orkut was successful in India, in spite being nowhere in US…It will be interesting to see how the newcomers use mobile connectivity to a good effect. That can prove a main driver for people to switch from orkut…right now, the only reason I am active on orkut is that I have my friends there…the fundamental reason behind the term ‘critical mass’.

Don’t know if there are clones of variants like Fanpop (fan-following-social-network) or twitter (find-what-I–am-doing – the original purpose of weblog) in india…may be some people are working on those already…it doesn’t take long to have such clones these days, with internet minimizing geographical distances and spreading knowledge unbelievably fast…one more innovative venture is Ning…by Marc Andersson of Netscape fame…it allows you to create your own social network… of course it won’t be much better than creating groups inside a normal social network as of now…you won’t be able to really edit it the way you like…beyond adding a few widgets…but they will evolve…Facebook application platform is the latest buzz in this space, and is attracting huge crowd within very few days.

By the way, Marc Andersson is a fantastic read for people like me (startup aspirants)…a series of articles on life-of-startups here. There are 6 excellent articles in this series so far.

P.S. Reliance is also getting into this space with BigAdda…so the action is getting hotter day by day… 🙂


3 Responses to “India Tech Startup scene – Social Networking”

  1. Prasad Edlabadkar Says:

    Nice blog…But I don’t understand the revenue model behind the social networking sites. If it is from online ads, do people actually click them? I don’t when I visit the site. I better google whatever I want. Do they sell the information to companies? I guess not. A model I can think of is, ask companies to subscribe to these sites and community site administrators would send spam mails to all of accounts. Because the some of the site say that they can send the information about their products and services from time to time. Is this the model?

    Overall, nice blog to read.


  2. Sumedh Says:

    Interesting idea to allow spammers to invade community’s privacy…even if they do so, they will never admit it openly…and companies like google dont need to do so…

    About ads, if they are really context sensitive…for example, if you get an Ad of Pulsar in a bike lovers community, it certainly has an impact…in brand building (which is a little intangible), and also sales…

  3. Shivaas Says:


    Would you be interested in working in a startup based in Delhi ? We require some excellent coders to join us in the core development of our product, and i think you may have the skills we require..

    Hope to hear from you soon. Contact me at


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